Best of USB Flash Drives

Posted on March 5, 2012

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Which flash drives to consider and which to ignore completely? Don’t know? Well, you’ve come to the right place.

Top flash drives to consider:

1. Transcend Jetflash 700:

The Transcend Jetflash 700 has an USB3.0 interface, which delivers a fast transfer speed. The 16GB model can be found on Amazon for only $28. The price fluctuates slightly depending on which site you use. In the end, Transcend offers speed and affordability with this device. However, don’t stop here. All Transcend flash drives qualify for a free utility software which can be obtained through their site. Their Elite software makes data encryption easy, but it doesn’t stop here. The Elite software is capable of performing back ups as well. What’s best of all is that no installation required. Elite is a very small and portable software that can be ran right on the flash drive.

2. LaCie Fastkey:

A bit on the expensive side with the 30gb costing $150, 60GB at $259, and 120 GB at $449. However, if you can afford the price, then definitely get the Fastkey. Just like the name, the Fastkey is rated one of the fastest USB3.0 drives available. By the way, this actually isn’t a flash drive, it is a solid state drive. From my personal experience, it takes approximately one minute to transfer 2GB of files. The Fastkey has a full aluminum casing, which offers a lightweight design. If you care about size and speed, then the Fastkey is the way to go. Unfortunately, the Fastkey does have some drawbacks. For starters, the security encryption software provided by LaCie isn’t the greatest. Cannot be run without installing. The installation of the security software Private-Pubic can only proceed if the computer has the associated drivers. In terms of security, 256 bit AES software encryption available, currently no hardware security.

3. Kingston DataTraveler HyperX:

Falling closely behind the Fastkey is the HyperX by Kingston. The HyperX offers a USB3.0 connectivity, but also a massive storage of up to 128GB. The maximum speed achieved just falls slightly behind the Fastkey. Although it is made up of hard plastic, it simply doesn’t have the durability as seen on the Fastkey. Like the Fastkey, the HyperX also carries a hefty price tag. Unfortunately, Kingston does not provide software encryption for the HyperX.

4. Patriot SuperSonic Magnum:

The Patriot SuperSonic Magnum really doesn’t fall behind HyperX. In many cases, they are equal in performance, speed, and durability. However, what set the SuperSonic Magnum back behind the HyperX is the size. The HyperX is simply slightly smaller, while delivering the same speed as the SuperSonic Magnum. Unfortunately, still no hardware and software encryption available.

5. Corsair Voyager Series:

To be honest, the Voyager actually looks quite ugly. Until you actually hold it in your hands, you will know what I mean. It just doesn’t have the sleek appeal as seen with the other flash drives. Never the less, we should never judge a book by its cover. The Voyager actually has a much slower speed for a USB3.0. However, what it doesn’t make up in speed, it makes up in price and durability. The Voyager has a rugged design and is significantly cheaper compared to the Magnum, HyperX, and Fastkey.

6. Sandisk Fit:

Of all the USB2.0 flash drives, the Sandisk Fit is the only one to consider. Of all the USB 3.0 flash drives, only the Transcend 700 is considered small. If you need something more pocketable, then the Fit should fit perfectly! The small size sacrifices the transfer speed, but the capacity is still there. Maximum capacity is only 16GB, which is sufficient for everyday storage needs. The only reason the Fit made it to the list is the size, but other than that, it lacks features and performance. Sandisk provides an encryption software, SecureAccess, which is used for easy drag and drop encryption. Don’t get excited because there’s nothing really to be excited about. SecureAccess is just poorly built as it has no file shredder, poor encryption speed, and best to avoid entirely. Comments on SecureAccess in the Sandisk forum backs up my claim: Sandisk Forum for SecureAccess.

I hope you found this helpful and will help you choose your next flash drive. I will be releasing another post with flash drives that you shouldn’t consider and why.

Thanks!

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Posted in: General, Technology